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Village Voice Media Lays Off More Staffers

In the Village Voice Media empire, the Village Voice is probably the flagship weekly. I guess you could make an argument for the LA Weekly. Well, on Friday, the Village Voice laid off or cut hours of four editorial staffers, which led former Voicer Rosie Gray to proclaim that the paper is on the verge of collapse, and, plagued by the Backpage.com controversy, the entire chain is heading in that direction. She quotes someone who was recently let go from the Dallas Observer, which is also owned by Village Voice Media. The former Observer writer said: “I can’t imagine how much leaner they can get.”

Update (9:34) – David Carr, over at the New York Times, has a slightly different take. The problem isn’t Backpage.com or the debt New Times took on when it bought Village Voice Media. The problem is — duh — the internet. Says Carr: “The idea of the alternative weekly — that news would be covered absent the agenda of mainstream media and that truths would be told without paying heed to any kind of formal balance or objectivity — has all but been overwhelmed by the Web. Listings, spicy writing, coverage of the next big thing, all of that has been digitized and democratized and many alternatives have ended up looking, of all things, stodgy within this new-media context. It probably makes sense that Ms. Gray, a talented young journalist, issued her anticipatory — and perhaps premature — obit for The Voice writing for BuzzFeed.”

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3 comments on “Village Voice Media Lays Off More Staffers

  1. It’s sad for the Observer. All their best writers left a year ago. They shut down Richie Whitt’s little corner, DC9 at Night loses Pete Freedman, and Robert Wilonsky takes off for (greener?) pastures over at the DMN. Now they’re stuck with junk bloggers, half of whom are from Austin, to try and score pageviews from.

  2. I used to be an avid Observer (paper and blogs) reader, but it has gone to crap. Good riddance.